“Goal for the week: to not skip any classes. We’ll see if that happens or not… #senioritis.” This is a more common tweet than any institute would like to see. What is senioritis? Is that really a thing? Is this made up? According to Merriam-Webster.com, senioritis is defined as, “an ebbing of motivation and effort by school seniors as evidenced by tardiness, absences, and lower grades.”
Senioritis seems like something that can easily go away. However, many people who suffer from senioritis pay the harsh consequences later on. Your senior year, no matter what institution you are in, is the most important. If you’re in high school going to college, that is one of the most important years colleges refer back to. If you’re in college, your senior year contains your senior capstone class, which if failed you cannot receive your degree. If applying to graduate school, a weak senior year will tear apart your transcripts. It seems like such a silly thing to let get in the way of your future, because it is. Most people don’t even realize they have senioritis until it’s already to late.
The type of senioritis and its impact varies widely among students. Many students fall in between feeling apathetic about school and attending class, while others are overwhelmed by the pressure to succeed both in class and prepare for life after college. A student with extreme senioritis may end up retaking courses or even graduating late for simple reasons such as attendance.
Students can avoid senioritis—or at least manage it—by following these tips:
- Take care of yourself: Never skip a meal. Pack snacks and make time to exercise.
In addition to those healthy habits, Yale University suggests that students get adequate sleep and avoid the exhausting “all nighter.”
With days filled with studying, attending class, managing outside events and a personal life, and participating in extracurricular programs, students have to stay healthy to not fall behind.
- Stay organized: Time management and using a planner helps to make enough time to for work, friends and academics.
It is important to keep track of academic deadlines in a day planner, and seniors also need to allot enough time for assignments.
3. Be realistic: Many seniors don’t seem to understand just how hard it is to get hired after graduation or accepted to graduate school.
John Stoner, a history professor at the University of Pittsburgh says that, to “temper their optimism with realism,” he urges his students to utilize university career services, to schedule time to retake tests such as the LSAT or GRE if needed, and to seek experiential learning opportunities and internships.
- Visit the career center: Seniors usually face stressful decisions about post-graduation plans, and avoiding those decisions is not going to make them disappear.
Even if students know what they want to do they should still use their schools’ career services, which are usually right on campus and free.
Make an appointment with career services to perfect interview skills and résumés, attend workshops and learn about job openings, among other things. It’s never to late to find something else you might be good at.
Battling senioritis has become a yearly trend. It is up to the student to not let it bring them down. Graduation is right around the corner. Take care of yourself, stay organized, be realistic, visit the career center and most importantly finish strong!